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District: Two Guardian Team members removed from program after guns left unattended

Posted at 4:46 PM, Feb 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-21 19:02:26-05

WHITNEY, TX — Whitney ISD says two members of their Guardian Team were suspended from the program after two guns were left unattended in separate incidents.

On Tuesday, 25 News received a police report that was filed in August 2019 after the Whitney High School vice principal left her gun unattended in a female teacher's bathroom.

On Thursday, 25 News received another police report that was filed in October 2019 after a Whitney Middle School teacher left her gun unattended in a teacher's workroom.

Both the vice principal and middle school teacher were members of the Whitney ISD Guardian Team, a program that allows approved school administrators to carry firearms on campus.

On Friday, Whitney ISD Superintendent John McCullough issued a letter to parents addressing the two incidents.

In the letter, McCullough said in both incidents, the Guardian Team member was instructed to place their firearm in their personal vehicle and was immediately suspended from the program pending an investigation. McCullough said both the vice principal and middle school teacher were removed from the Guardian Team following the investigation.

McCullough said the district did not notify the public after either incident due to safety concerns. He said the identities of the Whitney ISD Guardian Team members are kept confidential to "protect them in the event they are called into action to protect our students."

The superintendent stated that he talked to County Attorney David Holmes, who said he will not be reopening an investigation with either incident and no charges will be filed.

Following the incidents, McCullough said all Guardian Team members were involved in an "additional intensive retraining session" on October 26, 2019 to reemphasize procedures. All team members also signed a new Whitney ISD Guardian Team contract acknowledging the standards listed.

The new training was conducted by WISD Guardian Training Officer Drew Haley, who is a veteran with multiple combat tours and a USCCA certified trainer.

McCullough says a copy of the guardian procedures is available to anyone who would like to view them.

According to the superintendent, the Whitney ISD School Board reviewed the Guardian personnel during the October 21, 2019, board meeting.

McCullough says the Guardian Team members will continue to train and follow the procedures to assist in making Whitney ISD "as safe as possible for our students and staff."

Full letter: